Did not like Jil Sander. It was about as creative as John Varvatos -- who weirdly seemed to be attempting to channel Ann D with all the white/cream and excess buttons. At Jil there was nothing surprising (which is fine), nothing interesting (which is less so), and nothing desirable (which is worst of all since it can make up for the other two).
I liked Les Hommes -- they did a better job than Jil of refreshing basics. Lots of ticket pockets.
The unorthodox quilting on outerwear at Neil Barrett was neat, along with some insect-like metallic greens. The tie-dye-looking uneven vertical stripes were not my cup of tea. Even more ticket pockets.
Versace began with a man-junk dim sum and went metallic apeshit from there. It was all a little too much for me but how much of that is just the styling? Hard to say just after taking it in for the first time. I'm not feeling the high-top lace-up sandals, they're like some kind of Dsquared-Gucci hybrid on crack. If this is what makes "the Versace customer" happy, they must have been awfully unhappy when whats-his-face was working there making everything black. (I just tried to Wiki this and couldn't find shit -- where is there a reliable list of who has designed what for whom in the last few years?? I can't remember if it was Plokhov or Barrett, eesh.)
Burberry to me feels as though it's been coasting for a year or two, but it's still pretty reliable. Traditional Burberry stuff with generic ethnic prints thrown in for good measure, it's pretty innocuous stuff and I'd wear most of it but I won't buy any of it. Bailey's had a bunch of good iconic outerwear the last few seasons (more than anyone else I can think of) but this is summer so there's only so much he can do without rolls of shearling and leather and belts akimbo.
I always like Costume National, often without being able to articulate why -- maybe I've unthinkingly bought into the brand mythology and now can't unsubscribe my cerebrum? It's stuff I'd wear, though this collection seemed a bit weaker than usual, but I never end up buying any of it anyway and there's never good stuff second-hand, so I don't own any.
As for Dolce & Gabbana, this is their first season not creating D&G in parallel, but I see no indication of any creative surge. These guys haven't done anything interesting in years as far as I am concerned. It could partly be the buyers' fault, but at the Holt Renfrew store in Toronto it's the Dolce section you can reliably laugh at everything because it's always crap. (Then again, I never see anything interesting from Dolce anywhere online either.) T-shirts with Al Pacino's face on them that say SCARFACE overhead and AL PACINO underneath? James Dean / Muhammed Ali / etc tees with their names scrawled all over as if people need to be told who they are? Where's the "design"? They make a decent suit (for the lucky few who bleed money), but I don't think that's nearly enough. This is the name that is synonymous with fashion to half the world; they haven't been earning it lately. They also always have the most looks/outfits in their shows: 85 this season (but lots even when they were doing D&G on the side) versus 30-40 for most of the other shows (and some like McQueen and Balmain have done just 10-20). Why stretch maybe a dozen looks' worth of ideas over eighty-five runway walks when it just draws attention to the redundancy and general staleness?
Edited by GoldenTribe - 6/23/12 at 3:52pm